Legal departments will grow as your company grows and your business scales. Sometimes business upscale can happen rapidly, and it is always beneficial to be prepared. This helps you stay organized and on track when you are scaling different departments, including the legal department. To properly scale your legal department, there are a few steps to take into consideration.
EVALUATE THE IMPACT OF EACH TOOL ON YOUR INTERNAL LEGAL PROCESS
When it is time to scale your legal department, it is crucial to see what the current processes are like, and which tools can better impact these internal processes. This overall understanding will help you decide what changes you need to make to properly scale the department. To begin with, here are some basic tools you can evaluate:
- Legal spend management software: Evaluate what system your internal legal team uses to process client bills and invoices. You can also review details such as hourly rates, budgets, and future financial planning. Identify key legal tech tools that you could use to help make this process more efficient, such as legal spend management software.
- Document management system: Every legal department deals with an abundance of both virtual and physical documentation, such as emails, contracts, invoices, and more. IDC data shows that the “knowledge worker spends about 2.5 hours per day, or roughly 30 percent of the workday, searching for information.” Therefore, evaluating the current document management and filing system can help you understand which tools can have the best impact on your process to reduce time spent on filing and searching for key documents.
- Contract lifecycle management: Legal tech tools enable the legal team to set up a system for handling each contract that comes and goes through the company. This also includes a system for digital signatures by various parties involved and the eventual archiving of contracts after a particular period. Evaluating the current system can help you identify pain points, if any, that can possibly be solved through scaling your legal department with the right legal tech tools.
- Task management system: This is a useful tool for project management within the legal department. The legal team will need to interact with almost all other departments in the company on a regular basis. Using a task management system helps monitor critical tasks as well as minimize paper memos and email threads while digitally tracking all communication.
COLLABORATE WITH STAKEHOLDERS ACROSS YOUR TECH STACK
Once you have identified the impact of each tool on your internal legal process, it is crucial to collaborate with stakeholders across your tech stack. This helps you understand their processes and what tools they use. As a first step, you will need to reach out to every department in your company that you collaborate with as a legal team to understand the kind of tools, software, and tech they use. Understanding their processes and tools will help you build your company's tech stack to be more cohesive and collaborative.
CONSIDER THE VALUE OF EACH POTENTIAL TOOL
Once you have a full overview of the tech stack of the company's operations, it is time to consider the value of each potential tool and run a cost-benefit analysis. Investing in the right tech stack when you are scaling your business can build a good foundation for your company's future. A common error most companies make during scaling is building their software and tech internally due to budget constraints or other reasons.
If you build your tools internally, you will eventually be playing catch-up and fall behind. Instead, investing in good software and building a strong tech stack allows you to grow with the evolving world of technology. Legal technology is becoming more important every day and choosing the right legal tech tools is critical to your business growth.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.